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Kawhia Kai Festival

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  • Sat 2 Feb ’13, 9:00am – 5:00pm


Omimiti Reserve, Ōmimiti St, Kawhia, Kawhia Harbour


All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Adults: $10.00
  • Children 12 years and under: $2.00

The Kawhia Kai Festival is an annual festival of contemporary and traditional Maori kai (food) in celebration of Waitangi Day.

Held on Ōmiti Park reserve on the shores of Kāwhia Harbour on the West Coast of New Zealand’s North Island, the festival offers more than just food with legendary Māori hospitality, entertainment as well as arts & crafts provided throughout the one-day festival.

The festival has a full line up of entertainment from rock bands, soloists and kapa haka performing groups. Traditonal Maori carving, weaving and tatooing are also on display for the thousands of visitors who come to the festival on the tranquil shores of the Kawhia Harbour.

Four local marae put down a mega hangi (earth oven) which is always sold out. But among the 25 food stalls, visitors can sample other traditional kai from both the land and sea including such delicacies as toroi (marinated mussels and pūhā), creamed pāua and kina, īnanga (whitebait patties), kānga wai/pirau (fermented corn), pūhā and pork spring rolls, pāwhara (smoked fish and eel) as well as the local Waikato delicacy - kōkī (shark liver pate).

Even the festival’s venue is designed along the lines of a traditional Māori village. Visitors enter through a carved waharoa (gateway) – and the whole site is surrounded by fences made from manuka.

The festival attracts New Zealanders of all ages and backgrounds.

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